UK’s Celebrity Big Brother 2008 cancelled

This winter, the UK’s Channel 4 will not air a season of Celebrity Big Brother, as the show has been cancelled by the network. That’s the same upcoming season of the show that may have featured Paris Hilton.

The show could return in 2009, as “[a] decision about a return for the reality show in 2009 is expected to be made next year,” the BBC News reports. Earlier this year, the show generated complaints due to racist behavior from one of the participants; three others quit the show mid-season.

Channel 4’s “flagship Big Brother show has become a tarnished brand after the Shilpa Shetty racism row, which provoked 54,000 complaints and serious censure from Ofcom,” The Times reports. The paper also reports that the regular show, which isn’t doing well this summer, “could move to the E4 digital youth channel if its audience continues to narrow.”

Channel 4’s Kevin Lygo said, “It’s time to give Celebrity Big Brother a rest. It dominated debate about the channel. It’s a risk and ratings will probably fall. But there is no point in Channel 4 existing if we don’t take risks and create space for new programmes.”

Celebrity Big Brother 2008 axed [BBC News]
Celebrity Big Brother 2008 axed [The Times]
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Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 37, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.